What lips my lips have kissed, and where, and why,
I have forgotten, and what arms have lain
Under my head till morning; but the rain
Is full of ghosts tonight, that tap and sigh
Upon the glass and listen for reply,
And in my heart there stirs a quiet pain
For unremembered lads that not again
Will turn to me at midnight with a cry.
Thus in winter stands the lonely tree,
Nor knows what birds have vanished one by one,
Yet knows its boughs more silent than before:
I cannot say what loves have come and gone,
I only know that summer sang in me
A little while, that in me sings no more.
Other poems on Moss Kingdom about winter:
The View From Winter, December 21: an Advent poem for the Winter Solstice, Praying in the Sanctuary of Snow, Winter Words: a poem about the uselessness of poems, The Prodigal Sun: a poem about how we love the Sun despite his philandering, After Walking in the Rain, All Sad Thoughts Are Banished: reflections on Roethke’s death at the Bloedel Reserve, Of Edmund and Aslan, Winter Staves by Rusten Harris, Liturgical Time by Rusten Harris,“What lips my lips have kissed, and where, and why” by Edna St. Vincent Millay, A Seduction: in Four Seasons, Not One of Us Tried to Remember by Duncan King